BOTSWANA President Ian Khama has fired a Zimbabwean national Austin Sibanda who was a senior magistrate at a Mahalapye court after he refused to be transferred to Gaborone.
Senior Court REPORTER
Sibanda was dismissed from the Botswana Judicial Service last week after he failed to report for duty in Gaborone on February 3.
According to a statement released by Botswana acting registrar and master of the High Court, Michael Motlhabi, Sibanda was fired by Khama on March 26.
“Sibanda was dismissed from office on 26 March 2014 for gross misconduct constituted by his refusal to obey a lawful order from the chief justice directing him to proceed on transfer from Mahalapye Magistrate Court to the Gaborone Village Magistrate Court,” the statement read.
Sibanda had served as magistrate in several courts across Botswana, among them Tsabong and Palapye.
He gained prominence in 2010 when a Hukuntsi farmer in the neighbouring country, Ookame Lekaukau, sued him for unlawful detention.
At the time, Lekaukau had sought P425 000 from Sibanda as compensation for his unlawful incarceration.
In his court papers, Lekaukau had stated that while appearing before Sibanda’s court on stocktheft charges in Kang, the magistrate ordered the cancellation of his probation after his Gaborone-based lawyer did not turn up due to ill health.